Ulster book Ireland’s first place in Heineken Cup decider with win over Edinburgh
Brian McLaughlin’s side show Leinster the way forward
Ulster kept their end of the bargain as they booked a Heineken Cup final place in Saturday’s win over Edinburgh at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin.
Brian McLaughlin’s side held out for a 22-19 win over the Scottish team coached by former Irish international Michael Bradley.
They booked their place in the decider less than 24 hours before Leinster went into Heineken Cup semi-final action against Clermont in France.
Twickenham in London will host the May final with McLaughlin, set to depart the job after that match, adamant there is more to come from his team after Ruan Pienaar kicked 17 points on Saturday.
“We are delighted to be where we are. It was exceptionally tough,” said McLaughlin as Ulster reached their first decider since winning the European Cup in 1999.
“We knew it was going to be like that. Edinburgh threw everything at us. They did not make it easy to play.
“We are looking forward to getting to Twickenham and showing we can dog it out like we did today but also we are a very capable rugby side.”
McLaughlin also paid tribute to the 40,000-plus Ulster fans who turned the Aviva Stadium a home from home.
“It was an unforgettable experience and one that will live with me for the rest of my days,” he said.
Edinburgh coach Michael Bradley said: “We are disappointed and a little bit frustrated. We had enough opportunities to build a bigger points total than we did.
“In the second half Ulster shut us down a little bit more. They stifled our ability to play attacking rugby. Ulster got the upper hand in the scrum but we had chances to win the game.”
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